Flip-flopping is unsurprisingly common in politics and Thursday’s Supreme Court ruling on the individual mandate is another example how the Obama administration changes its rhetoric whenever it’s convenient. In 2009, President Obama repeatedly claimed that the individual mandate was not a tax increase, however, the Supreme Court just ruled it constitutional based on congress’s right to tax. Here’s Obama in an interview from 2009 along with a report from Politico on the recent news:
Chief Justice John Roberts joined with the court’s four liberal justices in the ruling, which says Congress had the authority to impose the law’s individual mandate under Congress’s taxing power.
“Simply put, Congress may tax and spend,” Roberts wrote in the majority opinion. “This grant gives the federal government considerable influence even in areas where it cannot directly regulate.”
“The federal government may enact a tax on an activity that it cannot authorize, forbid or otherwise control,” Roberts wrote.
In a stinging dissent, Justice Anthony Kennedy suggested that the other justices wanted to wipe out the entire law. “In our view, the entire Act before us is invalid in its entirety,” he wrote.